What does one have to do with the other? Creativity and judgment?

I read a number of spiritual based books and, therefore, they cause me to think a bit differently sometimes. One recurring theme throughout those books is that judgment prevent us, as people, from connecting to each other. We are quick to deliver the right/wrong/good/bad verdict before we even know the story. Further, this begs the question as to should we deliver the verdict at all. I now say no.

Each morning, the first thing that I say to myself is that “I shall not judge anything that I see today.” This, indeed, is a tough assignment. I have found out that I am constantly meting out judgment and that when I don’t do it, my mind is calm and I feel no need to control everything.

Well, I’m off to participate in the world and not judge it! Being a judge is hard work and I don’t want any part of it!

So, what does this have to do with photography? Good question! How many times have you judged an image as having no potential before you even depress the shutter button? You walk up to a subject that has attracted you for some reason, looked at it, said to yourself that:

  • Someone’s already done it.
  • Someone’s already done it better than I can
  • I’m not talented enough to pull that type of shot off
  • It wouldn’t make a good shot

Now, these are my own internal judgments on both the subject and my abilities. You may have your own set. However, they are judgments and we have told ourselves NO before we even get the opportunity to say yes. I’m not saying that we should shoot things willy nilly, but I am saying that if something has called your attention, go ahead and shoot it for a bit. Work it. Who knows, you may come up with a way of seeing that no one else has.

So, how can we even be creative with this constant monologue going on? We have to be open to experiment and we have to find a way to calm the ego and assure it that we know what we are doing and that everything is going to be fine.

Do your photos near the end of the shoot look a lot better than at the beginning? Mine sure do! I think it’s because I have gotten into the zone, or accessed that silent place and allowed myself to become more free. It’s a place where I’ve turned off the judgment and began to operate.

About the shots: Two shots that I almost talked myself out of taking! I’m glad that I didn’t take my advice!

Vera meets Charles
5, 479 days ago ...